British Columbia’s Conservation Officer Service reports more than 20,000 conflicts between humans and wildlife around the province between January and October of this year.
Environment Ministry spokesman Mike Badry says about 14,000 of those complaints involve confrontations with black bears.
He says 469 bruins, or approximately one bear in every 30 complaints, had to be destroyed.
Spring and early summer produced the greatest number of complaints about bears, but Badry says the confrontations have tailed off, making 2017 an average year for complaints about wildlife.
He warns that confrontations could increase because bears are now focused on finding as much food as possible before they hibernate.
Homeowners are urged to secure all food sources, such as garbage or compost and to ensure fruit trees are picked clean.
“These bears are trying to put on weight for denning throughout the winter, so they are highly motivated to find food,” Badry says.
“That is where we really put the emphasis on attractant management.”
The Canadian Press